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Old 11-11-2014, 08:52 AM
 
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We are southerners thinking about a move to minnesota. We have a chance to take a short trip, maybe 3 or 4 days in December. Problem is, we don't even own coats. We just wear sweaters or hoodies in the winter. I wear flip flops year round.

So I need to come up with the absolute basics without breaking the bank for clothes. Especially for the kids since they are likely to have outgrown anything we buy by the time we move.

The kids are 7 and 9 and will absolutly want to be in the snow. They have never seen snow. The 7 year old gets upset in the freezer isle from the cold. My other is very cold hardy.

So what must we have? I'm thinking a heavy coat, mittens and boots...snow pants? A special under layer? Hats, scarfs? Ugh! I have no idea. Help?
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Old 11-11-2014, 09:24 AM
 
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There is a chance it will be extremely cold in December as it's already 20 degrees colder than normal. Last December was the coldest it had been in 20 years. The most important things for kids are warm socks, mittens, hats and scarves since extremities will get cold first. Snow pants and an insulated coat with a hood are necessary for playing in the snow. Boots are pretty useful but they could get away with sneakers and warm socks if they don't stay out too long. If it's "normal" cold temps they could probably just wear regular pants and a cheap jacket. Adults can get by with whatever. I don't particularly dress up unless I'm going skiing or a walk or something like that.
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Old 11-11-2014, 09:42 AM
 
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Perhaps I could get away with buying a size up for them and they will still have use next year. Or I could donate to charity. Are there any good brands that are affordable and good quality? Its so funny to say, but I only bought my kids actual real coats once and they never used them so I never bought one again. And I grew up in moderate weather and just wore hand me downs. Epic cold has me concerned.
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Old 11-11-2014, 09:50 AM
 
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I bought my nieces winter coats from Uniqlo but I got them off season so they were half off. If it's just for a visit you can get stuff from Wal Mart and it will be fine.
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Old 11-12-2014, 06:04 AM
 
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sounds easy enough, thanks!
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Old 11-12-2014, 07:29 AM
 
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I'd check out your local Goodwill or other second-hand store and buy something cheap. When we lived in southern California I found the best deals on winter gear at those kinds of stores; the selection was obviously smaller than what we have in a cold-weather state like Minnesota, but because there was also less demand it meant that you could find some really good winter gear for a decent price. And for a short trip you don't need something perfect, just something adequate.
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Old 11-12-2014, 08:52 AM
 
Location: E ND & NW MN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighFlyingBird View Post
We are southerners thinking about a move to minnesota. We have a chance to take a short trip, maybe 3 or 4 days in December. Problem is, we don't even own coats. We just wear sweaters or hoodies in the winter. I wear flip flops year round.

So I need to come up with the absolute basics without breaking the bank for clothes. Especially for the kids since they are likely to have outgrown anything we buy by the time we move.

The kids are 7 and 9 and will absolutely want to be in the snow. They have never seen snow. The 7 year old gets upset in the freezer isle from the cold. My other is very cold hardy.

So what must we have? I'm thinking a heavy coat, mittens and boots...snow pants? A special under layer? Hats, scarfs? Ugh! I have no idea. Help?
yes if for s short visit....just get the basics.... no need to buy an expensive coat.... but a pair of boots, and good pair of gloves are a must. Hats aren't expensive. If they do want to play in the snow....snow pants are great....and as others have said dont have to go new...or at the least you can get the less expensive ones at Walmart, etc when you arrive.
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Old 11-12-2014, 01:37 PM
 
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In my opinion you can get by with layering the existing sweaters/hoodies/shirts you have on hand (if you don't mind feeling like the Pillsbury Dough Person when you're all layered up!) Many years ago when I was poor I made it through a whole winter by layering, with only a wool cardigan for my top layer. Layering is a smart idea even if you have a warm coat. A heavy coat with only a thin shirt next to your body is the worst option. Something to think about - your kids will definitely be happier if you provide them warmth with the least amount of weight.

You DO have to cover your heads, though. I prefer a hood to a hat, so maybe a double layer of hoodies with cheap earmuffs would do it.

The shoes/boots you need depend on whether you're going to be going out to the country in deep snow or if you're just going piddling around in a city. Be prepared to need to change your shoes/boots in case one pair gets too wet to wear. Warning: don't use regular hiking boots as snow boots - they can be slippery in the snow!

And don't forget the mittens! They are much warmer than gloves.

Last edited by 601halfdozen0theother; 11-12-2014 at 01:51 PM..
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Old 11-14-2014, 05:08 AM
 
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Thanks a ton for all the info! Its CRAAAAZY cold here, and my kids new school sends them outside to play so I have to buy real coats now LOL

So at least we will get more use out of them!
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Old 11-14-2014, 12:02 PM
 
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If you can get over to Joe's sporting goods in Little Canada they are having a sale right now. 30% off most stuff.
It's mostly all fancy stuff, though.

My suggestion is to get cheap gear for the kids because they grow out of it. However pony up for some solid gear for yourself. The new high-tech stuff is nice because it's warm without being bulky. I got a gore tex jacket at the Patagonia outlet in ST. Paul for $99 and an inner puffy jacket for $99 and it got me through the polar vortex without looking like nanook of the north. Plus if the seams ever pull out or a zipper needs replacing they will fix it for free.
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